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Morality and politics of a modern self. A critical reconstruction of Lockean liberalism.

Yamaoka, Ryuichi (1997) Morality and politics of a modern self. A critical reconstruction of Lockean liberalism. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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This thesis attempts to delineate the moral and political thought of John Locke as a philosophical narrative of liberalism. A central issue of the thesis is the idea of the liberal or modern self, but I do not interpret Locke's thought exclusively from this perspective. Rather, do I attempt to describe a moral vision that integrates Locke's ideas as a whole, in which his concept of the self is to be understood. The thesis shows that Locke's moral vision is a serious contribution to the liberal tradition, which gives us an insight into another, non-Kantian liberalism. After explaining the methodological nature of the thesis in the Introduction, I illustrate the development of Locke's early thought in chapters two and three. This reveals some theoretical problems imposed upon the intellectual effort of the mature Locke. The following three chapters deal with Locke's magnum opus. Essay concerning Human Understanding; they show that despite his failure to construct a demonstrative science of morality, Locke achieved a moral vision in his philosophical enterprise which has more enduring value than the moral science. Chapter seven interprets Locke's political argument from the standpoint of this moral vision. It sheds new light on Locke's political individualism (his theory of property, social contract, civil government, public good, political obligation, and revolution), and reveals some aspects of the nature of liberal politics. Chapter eight directly deals with Locke's concept of the self. It elucidates two distinct elements in his argument for the self (which are, in abstraction, mutually antagonistic), and explains how this duality of the concept of the self is secured in Locke's moral vision without difficulty. The conclusion summarises the main arguments presented in the thesis and suggests how we are to develop the insights we discovered in Locke's moral vision.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Philosophy
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses

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